Archive | January 2013

Capsule Wardrobe – Starting Jasmine

Today I started on the next item from my capsule wardrobe challenge. I had stopped working on the capsule wardrobe makes whilst making all of the Christmas gifts so I wanted to make sure that I got back up and running again.

My next make is the Colette Jasmine Top:


I chose version two but without the contrast. Firstly I cut out the fabric:


And then started the sewing. I did the stay-stitching, front darts, attaching front and back together and finishing the seams:


I will aim to work on the sleeves and collar over the next few days.

Fabrics Galore in NYC

I have now more or less got back into the swing of UK time and thought that I ought to post about my fabric delights whilst in Chicago and New York. We firstly went to Chicago and went to a Jo-Anns whilst there, I have read about Jo-Anns on some of the blogs that I follow so I wanted to go and have a look myself. I was completed overwhelmed by the size of the shop, my mum would call it gi-huge-mega-big, I brought a little fabric from there.


The green cord is exactly what i wanted for making the Madeline Skirt, my parent brought me the pattern for Christmas so it is so good to have the fabric to do this. I chose the green polka dot cotton because it went beautifully with the cord and will make a good top and lining.

Next we went to New York and had a look around the garment district. S came with and so ensure that he wasn’t bored rigid I focused my energies on the shops mentioned in here (this linked was kindly provided KadoHearts following my request for advice with fabric shopping).


Here I am in my coat and hat (from capsule wardrobe makes) outside one of the fabric shops (Prime Fabrics) and here is the inside of one of the shops:


Have you ever seen so much fabric in one place? Here are my purchases from the garment district:


The red chevron patterned material is a relatively thick knit that I will use to make the Renfrew Top (also a Christmas present from my parents). The cat and fish fabric is to make the Colette Taffy Blouse from (which is in the sewing handbook).


The green fabric will also become a Renfrew Top, although a different version and the patterned fabric has a currently unknown destiny but I liked the fact that it had all of the colours of my capsule wardrobe in it so thought it would be a good buy. I was relatively restrained on the fabric purchasing front (logistics of getting it home in my suitcase) but still seem to have come home with plenty. My fabric stash is growing again so I think that will be it for a while…need to get some sewing started.

Home, Snow and an Award

I am now back from my holiday, Chicago and New York were both absolutely amazing and it is somewhat of a shock to the system to be back on UK time. I managed to buy some beautiful fabric from my travels, which I’ll blog about in the next couple of day, if you have never been to the garment district…go!!

We landed in Heathrow to a beautiful covering of snow (feel quite lucky to have made it considering all the cancellations) and as soon as I saw it, I couldn’t wait to take Little One off to Epping forest. Here she is enjoying the snow:



Also I have returned to find out that I have been nominated for The Very Inspiring Blogger Award, thank you so much to Avis at Oh Sew Tempting for nominating me, such a lovely thing to find out upon logging on today. It is very nice to know that people take an interest in my little blog and I am therefore going to spread the blog love and pass on the award. The rules of this award are:

Here are the rules:

1. Thank the person who nominated you.
2. Add The Very Inspiring Blogger Award to your post.
3. Share 7 things about yourself.
4. Pass the award on to nominees.
5. Include this set of rules.
6. Inform your nominees by posting a comment on their blog.

Here is the award logo:

Seven things about myself:

1. Sometimes I can’t sleep at night for thinking about what I want to sew or knit

2. The first item of clothing I ever made myself was a pair of sequin flares (I have no idea why!) when I was fifteen. I added about six inches onto the waist because I didn’t trust my measurements. I didn’t make clothes again for another twelve years

3. I drive all over for my job, I use it as a handy excuse to go to different fabric shops…just to have a look

4. If I decide to take the train I take a portable craft with me, cross stitch or knitting is perfect

5. I have a ridiculous passion for maths and numbers.

6. I dream of going to Madagascar

7. My guilty pleasure are books by Cecelia Ahern (no telling my book club!)

I’d like to nominate the following blogs. These are all blogs that I love reading and have found beautiful and inspiring in their creativity:



A Conversation With Moo

Sew Busy Lizzy

Lizzy Likes Cake


New Year Resolutions – Wardrobe Maths

I have joined 187 other bloggers and joined in with Did You Make That? sewlutions. The one I entered into the jar is that I am aiming to finish the year with 75% of my wardrobe being made by me. I realise that this is probably the biggest of the aims that I have for the year so I thought that I best find out my starting position.


I have done a little bit of wardrobe maths to find out what my current percent is. I am almost embarrassed to put these up, so deep breath and here goes:


Shop Brought

Made by Me






















This means that I have a shocking 135 items of clothing in my wardrobe (and oh my word 55 of the them are tops!!), twenty of which have been made by me. This equates to 15% of my current wardrobe being made by me, so to get to 75% I need to increase this by 5% per month.

I hate to contemplate how many of those 135 items I actually wear so I think one of the starting points for this Make and Do aim is to have a proper sort out. If I decide to keep all of my current clothes this means I am faced with the task of making an additional 325 items of clothing…or put another way nearly one item per day. So not going to happen!

The other end of the spectrum is not making anything and therefore giving away ninety-five of my current shop brought clothes, also pretty unrealistic, who would manage with only 27 items of clothing in total. There mus be  a happy medium in there somewhere and by the end of the year hopefully I’ll have found it.

Sequins and Questions

Firstly the sequins. Next week I am going to a birthday party for someone who S works for and I needed to come up with a gift for him. I suggested adding sequins to a t-shirt with his name and S said he thought this would go down very well. Here is the t-shirt mid progress (I forgot to take a photo before I started):



It was a very simple (although time consuming process I completed this over three evenings whilst watching films) of sewing sequins onto the letters of his name filling the whole of the red area. Each sequin has a little glass bead on top. Here is the t-shirt all finished off:



Hopefully it will go down well when it is given to him next week. Anyway this nicely leads on to my questions, I am flying out to Chicago next week to meet up with S (so excited!!) where we will spend four days before flying to New York for four days. I have never been to America before and am really looking forward to it (although slightly nervous about making the flight on my own, I haven;t flown out of Europe since 1999 and then I was with a group of 17 people).

My question is:

Does anyone know of any great fabric shops in either Chicago or New York that I should visit?

Si is pretty tolerant of my fabric obsessional needs however I think dedicating one afternoon will be more than enough for him so want to focus my shopping.

Guess What Arrived This Morning

This may sound bizarre but I have been excitedly waiting for the arrival of this package for a few days. I ordered it over the Christmas period but it has taken a while with the festive post.

Here is what I opened up:


This is the 18 count aida and all of the coloured embroidery floss needed for the Superhero cross stitch Alphabet Sampler that I am making as part of my Make and Do 2013. This means I can now get started on the sampler, can’t believe how excited I am at the prospect of making that first stitch.